ICv2: RIP Sung-Rak Jang

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Sung-Rak Jang, also known as DUBU, the artist of the hit manhwa Solo Leveling, died July 23 of a cerebral hemorrhage. He was 37 years old. Yen Press, which publishes Solo Leveling, posted a translation of a post from Redice Studios stating that Jang had a chronic medical condition that led to the hemorrhage.

According to Anime News Network, Jang was the CEO of Redice Studios, which adapts novels into webtoons and is one of the partners in Yen Press’s new manhwa collaboration, Ize Press (see “Yen Doubles Down on Korean Webtoons”). Redice also provided illustrations for two manga available in English, space dandy and The island of giant insects.

Solo Leveling was originally published as a web novel (also licensed by Yen Press) and was adapted by Jang into a webtoon that ran on Tapas and several other webtoon platforms. The manhwa series was a best-seller, making the BookScan Top 20 list every month, and it was one of ICv2’s top franchises for Spring 2022 (see “Top Author Graphic Novel Franchises – Spring 2022”) . Japanese studio A-1 Pictures is adapting the story into an anime (see “Anime ‘Solo Leveling’”), which will be streamed in English on Crunchyroll. Yen Press will publish the fifth of six volumes in September.

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